Monday, July 15, 2013

Open Your Mouth

Cindy was baptized yesterday!  And guess who she asked to baptize her?  THIS GUY!  So I got to baptize her and here's the funny story - She was super nervous to slip and fall into the font.  I kept reassuring her that she wouldn't fall but when the baptism came around and I was walking down into the font - guess who slipped?  ME! 

Yes, I stumbled walking down the stairs.  It was hilarious!  So I had the entire audience laughing before the baptism.  I just laughed it off - otherwise that could have been embarrassing! 

My new companions are Elder Corey and Elder Read.  E. Corey is from Plain City and Elder Read is from Las Vegas.  They're both pretty cool and E. Read is brand new and is so excited to be a missionary.  :)

I'm glad that you guys had a good time on trek!  Some days it feels like I'm on trek . . I just walk around in the hot, muggy weather with a backpack!

I'm sorry to hear about your friend, mom.  That's so hard and I see it all the time here in Anadarko.  Sometimes people don't understand why bad things happen and sometimes I don't really either!  But I guess all we can really do is trust in the Lord's plan.  There are soo many people who loose people they love.  Although you might not understand why she had to return so quickly, the Lord does.  He will take care of us as long as we continually keep His commandments and trust in Him.  John 16:33 - Be of good comfort, He has overcome the world for us.  :)

As for this week, it's been a bit slow:

Monday:  We said some good-byes and had or normal p-day and played some basketball.  I sure miss Elder Tripp and Nelson.  They were awesome and the 3 of us just got along so well.  I wish that all my companions could be like E. Tripp.  He's been my favorite here in Oklahoma.

Tuesday:  We had a few lessons and said some more good-byes.  E. Tripp was just so sad to leave Anadarko.  There is just something about this little town.  I'm going to be super sad to leave this branch too.  They've become like family to me. 

We taught Cody and his wife and sister about the 10 commandments.  They're super solid and progressing towards baptism!  :)  And Charlie told me that he doesn't want to meet with the missionaries anymore.  That made me super sad.  :(  I love him and his little family and I'm going to try my hardest as long as I'm here to help them come into the gospel.  If nothing else, we've helped is wife quit smoking. 

So I guess all I can do is keep moving.  Keep your butt low, and keep on driving.  That night E. Tripp and E. Nelson had to say good-bye to Sister Wright (mom) and that was hard, even for me. 

Wednesday:  We drove up to the city for the exchanges and that's where I picked up the new guys.  :)  We drove back to Anadarko and got situated.  They spent a couple hours unpacking and I took a quick nap and then that night I introduced them to Cindy.

Thursday:  We had weekly planning and since I had to tell them everything about the area it took forever!  When we got done, we went over to Matt's house and he wasn't doing anything so we took him out with us.  We went by Cody's house and he told us to come back in a hour when everyone else would be home.  As we were driving away, we saw one of our investigators was home.  He's been up in the city for about a month.  We stopped in to see him and he was there with his mom.  They were super sad and told us about his sister passing away and they also just found out that their nephew was hit by a car and was in the hospital.  So many bad things were happening to them so we taught them about the Plan of Salvation.  It was one of the most spiritual lessons ever and Matt even told us that he's never felt like that before and that he wished that he could feel like that all the time.  It's so true.  I wish I could feel the spirit all the time too!!

When we went back to Cody's house and his family shared the biggest miracle I've heard while on my mission!  Their daughter was diagnosed with leukemia in April.  The Elders came in and gave her a blessing sometime around April 25th.  When they met with the doctors again on May 13th they couldn't find a single cancer cell in her!  She was in full remission from Leukemia!!!

She was completely healed within 2-3 weeks of that priesthood blessing.  If that's not a miracle, I don't know what is!  She still has to go to the hospital and get chemo for a little while but this has been a testimony builder for this family all because of the RESTORED priesthood!  :)

Friday:  We had district meeting and it was a little awkward to be honest.  We had some solid studies and went out to do some work.  A few weeks ago, we helped a guy pull a post out of the ground and we tried to go back and see him but I couldn't find his house again.  So we kept walking around and we stopped at an intersection and tried to decide which direction to go.  While we were standing there, this guy that we were looking for walked up to us and said what up!!!  I couldn't believe it!  So we're going to go back to his house in a few days and tell him what's up.  Pretty cool miracle!

Later that night we met with Jesus.  I'm very sad for them because they're totally ready to get baptized.  They believe in the restored priesthood and the Book of Mormon.  The only problem is that the Spanish branch is an hour away.  Not many people here speak Spanish.  I wish they could get baptized and have the blessings of the gospel right now, but it will all work out.

We also stopped by Cindy's house and she had a friend Ruby with her.  Ruby has sat in on a few lessons with us and so we asked her if she wanted to get baptized.  She said she would!!!!  :)  I'm super excited that Cindy can help us teach her!  :)

Funny story.  Cindy has a friend who lives in Chickasha.  Her name is Michelle and she wants to meet with us.  When I was on exchanges with E. Lowe up in Chickasha last transfer we met a taught a girl named Michelle.  I've recently realized that this is the SAME MICHELLE!  So who knows what's going to happen now!

Saturday:  We had some cool stuff happen.  I met this lady who is 102 years old.  She is this cute little black lady who can barely hear, see or walk.  She is super cool and was actually a referral from the elder in Chickasha.  We then went to see Charlie.  He was home alone so I had the opportunity to just talk to him about how over time our faith grows stronger and stronger.  I shared D & C 50: 24-25.  Then I had the idea to use that flashlight that Ty gave me with the analogy that when we turn on a flashlight that it gets brighter and brighter, it works the same way with our faith.  I just kept turning the flashlight to make it brighter and brighter!  Nothing comes instantly.  We have to have our faith tried a little bit, but over time all is possible through Christ.

That night we went to a branch party to meet everyone.  It was out at Lake Latonka and they went on this little "house boat" thing.  President approved it, so we went!  We got to sit on the porch and watch all the boats pull into the harbor.  We got a ton of funny looks from people, some girls even checked us out, and one guy even said, "hey guys, at least undo the top button or something"!  I thought it was super funny. 

Brother Buckner is a dentist and was telling me all about his job.  I think it sounds pretty awesome, and I think that maybe I want to be a dentist when I grow up.  :)  Good thing I still have hmmmm . . . like almost 2 years to think about it before I go back to school.  Sounds good to me!  :)

Sunday:  We had church as normal and then the baptism.  It was awesome and Cindy was so prepared!  I'm so excited for her and her decision to make this big step in her life.  Afterwards she invited us over for dinner and we cooked some burgers and hotdogs.

I'm a little frustrated and I'm going to vent for just a minute.  The branch president and the branch council didn't come to the baptism because they had a meeting.  It was the first real convert baptism that they've had in over 3 years!  When we met with all the branch missionaries, not one of them knew who Cindy was!  If you have any ideas about what 3 inexperienced boys can do to make this work, let me know. 

So to anyone reading this:  OPEN YOUR MOUTH! Go and talk to someone you don't know when you see them at church!  Who cares if they smell like smoke!  There is nothing better than someone walking in the church because that means they are ready to CHANGE.  So go and help them, don't turn away.  The missionaries work so hard to get these investigators to come to church.  Please help us by helping them.

3 Nephi 27:21  "Do as you have seen me do"
Be as Christ was.
I love you Mom!  :)  I hope you guys are doing great and enjoying the summer.
I know I'm enjoying being a missionary.  :)  It's the best!

Love you!
Elder Harris

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